James Gaherty

Lamont Research Professor
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
Seismology Geology and Tectonophysics
Earth and Environmental Sciences
Associate Director - Seismology, Geology and Tectonophysics
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
108G Seismology
61 Route 9W - PO Box 1000
(845) 365-8450
(845) 365-8150
Fields of interest: 
Earthquake Seismology, Geodynamics

The surface of the Earth is constantly deforming, over time scales ranging from seconds to eons, and spatial scales ranging from centimeters to thousands of kilometers. This deformation fundamentally impacts human life by generating natural hazards such as earthquakes and volcanoes, as well as by modulating our natural environment and climate. The underlying cause of this deformation is convection in the Earths mantle, the large-scale circulation pattern where hot material is constantly cycled to the surface, where it cools and then sinks. In my research, I utilize seismic images of the Earths deep interior to gain a better understanding of mantle convection and its effect on Earths surface. This effort often requires collecting new seismic data in field locations ranging from the mountain peaks of far northwestern Canada, to the newly formed seafloor in the Gulf of California.

List of degrees from highest to lowest:
Ph.D. Geophysics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
M.S. Geology
University of Michigan
B.S. Geophysics
Brown University
Honors & Awards: 
Sigma Xi Young Faculty Award, Georgia Institute of Technology 2002
Selected Publications: 
The teleseismic signature of fossil subduction: Northwestern Canada, Mercier, J. P.; Bostock, M. G.; Audet, P.; Gaherty, J. B.; Garnero, E. J.; Revenaugh, J. , Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth, Apr 29, Volume 113, Issue B4, p.-, (2008), Doi 10.1029/2007jb005127

Seismic velocity structure and depth-dependence of anisotropy in the Red Sea and Arabian shield from surface wave analysis, Hansen, S. E.; Gaherty, J. B.; Schwartz, S. Y.; Rodgers, A. J.; Al-Amri, A. M. S. , Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth, Oct 14, Volume 113, Issue B10, p.-, (2008), Doi 10.1029/2007jb005335

Evaluating hot spot-ridge interaction in the Atlantic from regional-scale seismic observations, Gaherty, J. B.; Dunn, R. A. , Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, May 11, Volume 8, p.-, (2007), Doi 10.1029/2006gc001533

Surface wave tomography of the upper mantle beneath the Reykjanes Ridge with implications for ridge-hot spot interaction, Delorey, A. A.; Dunn, R. A.; Gaherty, J. B. , Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth, Aug 24, Volume 112, Issue B8, p.-, (2007), Doi 10.1029/2006jb004785

Upper mantle structure beneath the eastern Pacific Ocean ridges, Gu, Y. J.; Webb, S. C.; Lerner-Lam, A.; Gaherty, J. B. , Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth, Jun 11, Volume 110, Issue B6, p.-, (2005), Doi 10.1029/2004jb003381

Mantle defomation during slow seafloor spreading constrained bv observations of seismic anisotropy in the western Atlantic, Gaherty, J. B.; Lizarralde, D.; Collins, J. A.; Hirth, G.; Kim, S. , Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Dec 15, Volume 228, Issue 3-4, p.255-265, (2004), DOI 10.1016/j.epsl.2004.10.026

Spreading-rate dependence of melt extraction at mid-ocean ridges from mantle seismic refraction data, Lizarralde, D.; Gaherty, J. B.; Collins, J. A.; Hirth, G.; Kim, S. D. , Nature, Dec 9, Volume 432, Issue 7018, p.744-747, (2004), Doi 10.1038/Nature03140

A surface wave analysis of seismic anisotropy beneath eastern North America, Gaherty, J. B. , Geophysical Journal International, Sep, Volume 158, Issue 3, p.1053-1066, (2004), DOI 10.1111/j.1365-246X.2004.02371.x

Structure of the Kaapvaal craton from surface waves, Freybourger, M.; Gaherty, J. B.; Jordan, T. H.; Grp, Kaapvaal Seismic , Geophysical Research Letters, Jul 1, Volume 28, Issue 13, p.2489-2492, (2001)

Seismic evidence for hotspot-induced buoyant flow beneath the Reykjanes Ridge, Gaherty, J. B. , Science, Aug 31, Volume 293, Issue 5535, p.1645-1647, (2001)